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Recipe courtesy of Bunk Sandwiches

Pork Belly Cubano

Seasoned pork belly has found its home-sweet-home on grilled French rolls, next to a slice of cured ham, melted Swiss, pickles, and mustard. This is our version of the classic South Florida and Cuban midnight snack. We use our house-cured and slow roasted pork belly to make this sandwich, but you can also use a piece of pork shoulder (which may be easier to source) in its place.
  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 52 hr 25 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Inactive: 48 hr
  • Cook: 4 hr 5 min
  • Yield: 4 to 8 servings
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Ingredients

Pork Belly:

1 cup kosher salt

1 cup sugar

1 tablespoon chopped garlic

1 teaspoon chili flakes

1 teaspoon ground fennel seed

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 tablespoon molasses

1 to 2 pounds naturally-raised pork belly

Assembly:

Four 8-inch French rolls

1/2 to 3/4 cup prepared mayonnaise

1 1/4 cups yellow mustard

Mexican hot sauce, for splashing

8 slices Swiss cheese (or medium Cheddar)

8 ounces smoked ham, thinly sliced

16 slices kosher dill pickles

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

Directions

  1. For the pork belly: Combine the salt, sugar, garlic, chili, fennel and nutmeg and rub all over the pork belly. Let cure in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days.
  2. Preheat a convection oven to 275 degrees F. Brush the pork belly with the molasses, place in a roasting pan and roast until tender, 3 to 4 hours. If the belly starts to get too dark, cover it in foil. Remove and let rest before slicing.
  3. For assembling: Open the French rolls and lightly spread the mayonnaise on one side. Squeeze the mustard liberally over both sides and throw down a few splashes of hot sauce. Divide the Swiss cheese slices among the bread. Add a couple of slices (2 ounces) of roast pork belly to each sandwich and top with ham and pickles. Lightly brush the butter on the outside of the sandwich.
  4. Heat a panini press or griddle over medium heat. Cook the sandwiches until the cheese is melted, about 6 minutes. Cut the sandwiches in half and serve.